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A 17-year-old was taken into police custody in the slaying of a Texas grandmother who was gunned down while visiting her son’s gravesite several months ago, police said.
Yolanda N'Gaojia, 52, was fatally shot in March at a cemetery in Killeen while paying respects to her recently deceased son. On Saturday, Killeen Police Department announced they’d arrested Christian Lamar Weston in connection with N'Gaojia’s killing.
A motive wasn’t released. It’s unclear if the teenager knew N'Gaojia. Weston will be charged as an adult, according to a spokesperson for Killeen Police Department. He’ll turn 18 in September, according to online jail records obtained by Oxygen.com.
A spokesperson for the Bell County District Attorney’s Office wasn’t immediately available for comment on Tuesday afternoon.
On March 22, authorities responded to Calvary Baptist Church Garden of Memories Cemetery at around 5 p.m. and found N'Gaojia and another victim suffering from gunshot wounds. N'Gaojia was later pronounced dead. The second shooting victim survived the incident.
N'Gaojia’s son, Amir Tajai-Kineh N'Gaojia, died in January. N'Gaojia was shot on what would have been his 22nd birthday, according to KXXV.
N'Gaojia was born in Chicago, Illinois and spent her childhood in New Orleans, according to her obituary. The Texas mother, who served in the U.S. Army and the National Guard, was twice deployed to Iraq for combat missions and did two overseas tours in Germany. N'Gaojia had planned to retire from the military in 2022. She leaves behind two other children as well as two grandchildren. A funeral was held for the slain woman on April 2.
“Yolie was a beautiful, selfless, humble, supportive, giving, loving, intelligent, strong, fearless, Queen in every essence,” her obituary stated. “She lived her life to love and protect her children and those close to her. She was the head of the village that kept so many pieces of the family puzzle together. She was always the life of the family events, and celebrations.”
No other information was released by officials.
Weston, who was since arraigned, is being held at a Bell County jail on a $605,000 bond, online records show. It’s unclear if he’s retained legal counsel.
Anyone with additional information regarding N'Gaojia’s murder is urged to contact Crime Stoppers at 254-526-8477.
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